When I released my freelance writing guide back in October it was always my intention to publish a Kindle version. If you’ve been following my Kindle publishing strategy to date then you will know that I pivoted sharply away from my original plans to publish an abridged version of the book on Amazon for $10 and decided instead to create a series of $3 mini eBooks that each tackled a specific topic relating to freelance writing.
Well, with three published Kindle books under my belt I thought the time was right to let you know about my progress to date and what I have planned for the future. One thing is for sure — my experiences to date have definitely changed my perspective on how to make the most of the Kindle publishing platform.
My Progress So Far
I had no real expectations going into “phase two” of my Kindle publishing strategy — my plan was to publish all of the books then take stock. I originally planned to release nine books although that increased to ten with the release of my guest posting guide.
If you’ve been keeping up to date with my income reports then you will know that I have made just over $200 so far from my Kindle eBooks — not anything to write home about but not disastrous either. Last week I made a total of $37.34 on Amazon.com (i.e. excluding international sites such as Amazon.co.uk) which equates to just over $160 per month. I’m not complaining but I hope and expect for those numbers to rise.
There’s just one issue with my planned approach — my heart isn’t in it. Publishing ten books is a huge commitment and as I have dug into my work I have found that my phase two plan wasn’t perhaps as practical as I first thought. With that in mind I have decided to pivot and adjust my strategy once more.
My New Strategy
At this point I plan to publish just two more Kindle books. I do this for two reasons:
- As I just mentioned, my heart’s not really in Kindle publishing. I need to take the core of what I have and demonstrate its potential before pouring more effort into the process.
- In reality some of the mini eBooks I had planned simply aren’t justified in terms of the quantity of content I am practically able to provide.
This is the thing: I have discovered that success in Kindle publishing is all about the market. In the same way that you have to pick a decent keyword to succeed in niche site publishing, you have to pick a decent market in order to succeed in Kindle. And while my loyal readership of freelance writing enthusiasts have helped to get my first few books off the ground they are not likely to start selling by the shedload any time soon. As such I don’t want to pour huge amounts of time into an endeavour that may not offer a suitable return.
My new strategy can be split up into three stages. Once I have completed those stages I will step back, analyse the results and decide how to proceed.
Stage 1: Finish Publishing
The first thing I want to do is finish the last two books in my series on freelance writing and publish them on Amazon. The two titles are:
- Freelance Blogging Success: How to Find Clients that Will Pay You $100+ Per Article
- Freelance Writing: How to Set and Negotiate Rates Confidently
These will complement the already published books on writing great blog posts and creating a blog for freelance writing success. Although there is more that you should know about becoming a successful freelance writer, these are the “sexy” topics that are likely to be most successful.
As per usual, each newly published book will be made available free of charge to those who subscribe to my Kindle email list. You can subscribe by entering your email address in the box below and hitting “Subscribe”:
Stage 2: Cross Promote
This second step forms the crux of what I believe to be a winning approach in Kindle publish — cross promotion.
By this point I will have five books published — all in the same niche of blogging/freelance writing. A person who reads one is likely to be interested in at least one of the other books and $3 is a low enough price point to make a purchasing decision relatively easy. The key therefore is in making the reader aware that other books of a similar nature are available. In this way one purchase may turn into two or three.
I will cross promote my books in two ways:
- By including an “Other Books by Tom Ewer” section at the beginning of each book
- By mentioning other books when it makes sense to do so within the content of each book
Stage 3: Further Promotion and Requests for Reviews
Although choosing the right market is vitally important, publishing in the most lucrative market will be of little use if you don’t get a generous selection of positive reviews.
Therefore, once all five books have been published I will selectively make each book available free of charge to my Kindle email list on a regular basis, so that people who missed out the first time around can grab a free copy. I know that some of you are thoughtful enough to leave a positive review by way of thanks which is greatly appreciated (and vital to the potential success of my books).
My Thoughts on the Future of Kindle Publishing
At this stage I am extremely doubtful that my existing line of books (including the two that are to be published) will generate more than a few hundred bucks per month at best. While I am certainly not going to turn my nose up at that it would not represent the kind of return that I was hoping for.
I am aware of people who are doing very well indeed out of Kindle publishing by targeting lucrative markets but it is not something that I necessarily want to get involved with. There are some aspects of Kindle publishing that remind me all too readily of niche site publishing — the somewhat arbitrary nature of it, the sole reliance on one source of traffic, and so on. The going may be good now but I am unsure of Kindle publishing’s long term viability.
Having said that I am making no commitment to my future involvement (or otherwise) in Kindle publishing at this stage. I want to get my five books out into the open, make sure that they are well-optimized for cross promotion and observe the results of my efforts. Only then will I be better informed to make a decision as to how I should proceed.
What are your thoughts on Kindle publishing? Have you experienced success or failure? I’d love to know your thoughts — fire away in the comments section!
Photo Credit: johncatral